Niels Swinkels

Native Dutchman Niels Swinkels is a freelance journalist, musicologist, and sound engineer. Before moving to San Francisco, he was the arts editor and senior classical music/opera critic for Brabants Dagblad, a regional daily newspaper in the Netherlands. As a freelance writer and sound engineer, he currently works for San Francisco Opera, KALW Local Public Radio, Elevation Online, Earprint Productions, and others.

Articles by this Author

Early Music/Baroque REVIEW
 American Bach Soloists  American Bach Soloists Take Intimate View of Bach Oratorios
April 26, 2016

Despite the large forces arrayed for the Easter and Ascension Oratorios, Jeffrey Thomas and his musicians achieve chamber music-like clarity and unforced communication.

More about American Bach Soloists »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  S.F. Symphony Plays from the Heart in Mahler, and Schubert
April 13, 2016
The orchestra’s intimate connection with the works of Mahler continues to inspire. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  MTT Studies the Academic Side of Copland and Schumann
April 5, 2016
SF Symphony featured the less-performed, edgy works in Copland's output, with Inon Barnatan at the keyboards for the Piano Concerto. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 Cal Performances  Montreal Symphony Sensational with Trifonov in Berkeley
March 29, 2016
The Russian piano phenomenon delivered a thrilling performance in collaboration with Kent Nagano and the OSM. More about Cal Performances »
Chamber Music REVIEW
 Curious Flights  Curious Flights Transports with “Transatlantic Crossings”
March 25, 2016
Fresh compositions by Simon Dobson highlight the latest installment of this inventive series. More about Curious Flights »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Denève Brings S.F. Symphony to a French Soundgasm
February 23, 2016
The French conductor brought a Glimmer of new music to the San Francisco Symphony’s series of subscription concerts. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Chamber Music REVIEW
 Cypress String Quartet  Cypress Quartet: Brahms by Osmosis
February 16, 2016
With friends Barry Shiffman and Zuill Bailey, Cypress Quartet gave fluid performances of Brahms’ sextets. More about Cypress String Quartet »
Early Music/Baroque REVIEW
 San Francisco Early Music Society  Forgotten Viennese Composers Get Some Love From Quicksilver
February 3, 2016

The greats and not-so-greats of 17th-century Vienna get a hearing thanks to the Quicksilver ensemble.

More about San Francisco Early Music Society »
Early Music/Baroque REVIEW
 American Bach Soloists  ABS Chorus Stands Out in ‘Bach Favorites’
January 27, 2016
American Bach Soloists revisited two of the three Bach Cantatas from their inaugural concert for the opening of their 27th season. More about American Bach Soloists »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Ax and Urbanski: A Meeting of Magnificent Musical Minds
January 19, 2016
Conductor Krzysztof Urbanski made an astonishing debut with the San Francisco Symphony, joined by pianist Emanuel Ax. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Early Music/Baroque REVIEW
 Voices of Music  Italian Baroque for the Holidays by Voices of Music
December 22, 2015
The early music ensemble performed festive pieces from the Italian baroque at St. Mark’s Lutheran in San Francisco. More about Voices of Music »
Choral REVIEW
 American Bach Soloists  American Bach Soloists Excel in Joyful Christmas Story
December 15, 2015
Bach’s sumptuous and inspired Christmas Oratorio was well-served by Jeffrey Thomas’ ace musicians. More about American Bach Soloists »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  On Schumann’s Big Night at the Symphony, Strauss Stands Out
November 24, 2015
The symphony is recording Schumann’s four symphonies, but orchestra and soloist made a stronger case for Richard Strauss. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Choral REVIEW
 San Francisco Girls Chorus  SF Girls Chorus, TENET Go ‘Behind Convent Walls’
November 4, 2015
The chorus joined the early music ensemble in honoring 17th-century female composers. More about San Francisco Girls Chorus »
Choral REVIEW
 California Bach Society  Cal Bach Society Revives Zelenka’s ‘Bohemian Masterpiece’
October 20, 2015
Cal Bach Society celebrated the opening of its 45th season with a fine performance of Jan Dismas Zelenka’s Missa Votiva. More about California Bach Society »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  S.F. Symphony Delivers Hearne's <em>Dispatches</em> With Dose of Tchaikovsky
October 6, 2015
Filled with music and ideas from outside the concert hall, Ted Hearne's new work opens doors, but it was not the only fresh performance at Davies this past week. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Trifonov’s Otherworldly Playing Kicks Off New Season for S.F. Symphony
September 29, 2015
The performance by the Russian concert pianist was absolutely astonishing and matched by MTT and his musicians. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Choral REVIEW
 Slavyanka Russian Chorus  Ringing in the 100th Anniversary of Rachmaninoff’s 'All-Night Vigil' with Slavyanka
August 25, 2015
The Bay Area Russian choral ensemble more than doubles in size for weekend performances of the timeless masterpiece. More about Slavyanka Russian Chorus »
Opera REVIEW
 American Bach Soloists  Marais’ <em>Sémélé</em>: A Spectacular Opera of Grand Proportions
August 18, 2015
Marais’ opera get its long overdue U.S. premiere thanks to American Bach Soloists. More about American Bach Soloists »
Opera REVIEW
 West Edge Opera  Monteverdi’s Ulysses Returns to His Homeland — a Warehouse in Oakland
August 4, 2015
With its unique setting, a former steel pipe factory, West Edge Opera stays true to its marketing tagline of "unexpected places" for "remarkable operas." More about West Edge Opera »